Heartland Payment Systems® introduces first single-point food safety monitoring solution for restaurants

(Press release), Chicago, National Restaurant Association Show, May 20, 2013 – Heartland Payment Systems (NYSE:  HPY), one of the nation’s largest payments processors and a leading provider of merchant business solutions, has launched SmartLink Food Safety Monitoring, the most advanced, single-point solution for monitoring of food storage and preparation equipment for the restaurant industry.

As restaurants, and the industry as a whole, work to tackle the important issues of food safety and food waste, the SmartLink Food Safety Monitoring solution directly addresses these problems by providing operators a new smart tool that makes it easier to consistently monitor critical food holding temperatures.

SmartLink Food Safety Monitoring is a cloud-based temperature monitoring solution that ensures greater efficiencies, enhanced control over the safety, quality and freshness of food being served, and access to detailed reports that document the holding temperatures relating to food safety and quality for restaurants and their customers while meeting Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points (HACCP) guidelines.

Specifically, each restaurant can be equipped with up to 25 temperature sensors that gauge and report the temperature levels of food storage and preparation areas. The sensors send SMS or email alerts to help ensure that refrigerator, freezer, oven and other critical doors remain closed to keep food at proper temperatures.  Additionally, an optional alert phone call can be arranged according to a client’s interest and the entire system is supported by Heartland’s 24/7/365 U.S.-based, world class service center.

“Experts estimate that approximately 15 percent of the food waste in the United States comes from restaurants,” said Michael Youngkin, Heartland’s senior director of network solutions.  “Some of this is unavoidable, but proper temperature monitoring can have a measurable impact on reducing food borne illness (3,000 Americans die each year from foodborne diseases) and food waste.  Current methods consist of manual monitoring by employees, which tend to be somewhat inconsistent and unreliable, or the use of traditionally overpriced, building automation systems that happen to offer temperature monitoring.”

Heartland’s SmartLink Food Safety Monitoring solution allows restaurant operators to have the most accurate information possible whenever they need it.  Not only can they rest assured that their food is stored and held safely, they know that the quality remains intact.  They may also realize savings in regard to equipment repair, maintenance and energy usage, as well as lost inventory relating to failed equipment that results in advance warnings.  Through continuous monitoring and digital recording of cold storage and preparation equipment, operators can analyze performance to identify degrading equipment before a complete failure occurs, thus saving thousands of dollars in inventory and emergency service calls.

In addition to consistent, 24/7 reporting and the ability to proactively maintain equipment to predict and prevent failure before it occurs, another major benefit of the SmartLink Food Safety Monitoring solution is ensuring compliance with the Food Safety Modernization Act of 2011.  The law calls for a number of provisions, including more frequent inspections and a requirement that food facilities have a written plan outlining possible problem areas and steps the facility would take to prevent these issues. With the SmartLink Food Safety Monitoring solution, restaurateurs have immediate access to reliable storage and preparation equipment temperature data whenever necessary.

Beyond food safety monitoring SmartLink helps restaurateurs meet PCI requirements by segmenting electronic payment transactions from other network traffic, while allowing for rapid implementation of other critical applications that require broadband connectivity. Additionally, SmartLink allows for the consolidation of multiple phone and Internet lines, which can often save restaurateurs telecommunications costs by bringing the services under a single umbrella.  In addition to consolidating multiple communication lines on one high-speed connection, SmartLink provides restaurateurs with secure, monitored network communication for Voice over IP, back-office systems, digital signs, email and managed Wi-Fi Internet access.  The SmartLink Food Safety Monitoring solution can be easily integrated into the entire SmartLink solution or installed on its own.

Heartland SmartLink is the only payment processor-provided managed network that is a PCI-certified service provider on the Visa global registry.  Heartland is one of the largest payments processors in the restaurant industry, with more than 60,000 restaurants using Heartland’s comprehensive suite of products and services, including secure card processing, mobile payments, payroll services, loyalty marketing and SmartLink, which has more than 16,000 installations nationwide.

About Heartland Payment Systems
Heartland Payment Systems, Inc. (NYSE: HPY), the fifth largest payments processor in the United States, delivers credit/debit/prepaid card processing, mobile commerce, eCommerce, marketing solutions, security technology, payroll solutions, and related business solutions and services to more than 250,000 business and educational locations nationwide. A FORTUNE 1000 company, Heartland is the founding supporter of The Merchant Bill of Rights, a public advocacy initiative that educates merchants about fair credit and debit card processing practices.  Heartland also established The Sales Professional Bill of Rights to advocate for the rights of sales professionals everywhere. More detailed information can be found by visiting HeartlandPaymentSystems.com,HeartlandPaymentSystems.com/Careers,Heartlandpaymentsystems.com/Blog or following the company on Twitter @HeartlandHPY and Facebook at facebook.com/HeartlandHPY.